Luxco’s third release of their limited edition Blood Oath is set to be released in April. Each year features a different blend. Pact No. 3 is a blend of two 7-year bourbons and a 12-year bourbon. One of the 7-year bourbons was finished in cabernet sauvignon casks from Swanson Vineyards in Napa Valley.
“These carefully selected bourbons come together for a spicy, yet incredibly smooth flavor profile. By finishing some of the bourbon in cabernet sauvignon barrels, I was able to drive more character and depth into the bourbon,” says John Rempe, creator of Blood Oath and Director of Corporate Research and Development at Luxco. “Not only will you taste the spiciness of the rye along with the sweet notes from the wine barrels, but you’ll also taste strong caramel and chocolate overtones, giving it a velvety, well-balanced finish.”
Like previous versions, Blood Oath Pact No. 3 is bottled at 98.6 proof and retails for $99.99. It is a one-time release of 10,000 bottles. I enjoyed the first two release. Read my notes for Pact No. 1and Pact No. 2.
Luxco is currently building a distillery in Bardstown. In fact, their still was installed just last week (as of the writing of this post). In the meantime, they continue to source their whiskies and are doing a fine job at picking barrels and blending whiskies.
The second annual release of Luxco’s ultra-premium Blood Oath bourbon has just hit shelves. Like last year’s inaugural release, Blood Oath Pact No. 2 is a blend of three bourbon whiskies. First, is an 11-year-old bourbon with a traditional rye mashbill. Whiskey number two is an 11-year old “wheated” bourbon, or one with wheat in it’s mashbill instead of rye. Third, but certainly not least, is a 7-year-old bourbon that’s finished in port barrels.
You’ll notice two important changes from the first release. Pact No. 2’s average age is probably a tad older than Pact No. 1. Also of note is the port finishing for the youngest bourbon.
Like the first release, this one is bottled at 98.6 proof and comes in a fancy wooden case. The price also carries over from last year – $99.99 for a 750ml bottle. The producers (not the distillers) of this bourbon say this blend will not be duplicated. Onwards to the fun part – the tasting.
The nose here is sweet, spicy and fruity. Sweet corn mash, vanilla, ginger ale, and a summer berry medley jump out of the glass. The last bit is no doubt a result of the port finish on one of this blend’s whiskies, and that port barrel influence also carries onto the palate. Notes of cordial cherries and fresh ginger root develop into rich clover honey, vanilla extract and cinnamon. A blast of sweet and slightly tart fresh berries make for the beginning of a delightful finish, but a sudden hit of astringent oak tannins comes out of nowhere.
I think the use of port barrel finishing one of these whiskies is a brilliant move. It adds wonderful fruit notes and makes Blood Oath Pact No. 2 a more complex and enjoyable whiskey than last year’s release. My first glass of this bourbon was just okay. A couple weeks of airtime really improved things. If it wasn’t for that slightly overdrying finish, this would be an absolute knockout. Still, it’s worthy of a pour.
(A review sample was provided by Luxco.)
Photo courtesy of Luxco.
Luxco announced the release of Blood Oath Pact No. 2, a blend of a 7-year-old port barrel-finished bourbon, an 11-year-old wheated bourbon and an 11-year-old rye-based bourbon. The average age of the whiskies used here is older than last year’s solid release (read my notes here). There’s more to go around this time, too. 7,500 3-pack cases of this blend have been created for sale, compared to the 5,000 3-pack cases of Pact No. 1. This release comes with a suggested retail price of $99.99.
Read the full press release below:
(St. Louis) March 28, 2016 – St. Louis-based Luxco has launched Blood Oath Pact No. 2 – the second expression in the limited release, ultra-premium bourbon series, Blood Oath. Blood Oath combines rare, top-notch bourbons, blended and bottled by hand for a distinctively exclusive and unimagined Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey. Pact No. 2 is a masterful union of three well-bred bourbons ranging in age from seven to 11 years. The first, a seven year rye bourbon finished in port barrels, is artfully joined by an 11 year wheated bourbon and an 11 year rye bourbon. Pact No. 2, bottled at 98.6 proof, is available in limited quantities nationally in 750ml bottles, with a suggested price of $99.99.
“Pact No. 2 is a rich marriage of three carefully selected bourbons, hand blended and bottled for a unique combination and exceptional taste,” says John Rempe, creator of Blood Oath and Director of Corporate Research and Development at Luxco. “The rye mash bill of the 11 year offers an oaky and spicy flavor, which is smoothed out by the extra-aged wheated bourbon – while the port-barrel finished rye brings it all together with a velvety sweet finish.”
Blood Oath Pact No. 2, just like its predecessor, is topped with a custom, eco-friendly natural cork, sealed and labeled with certificate-style paper stock signed by John Rempe. New for this year, each bottle of Blood Oath Pact No. 2 will be sold in a commemorative fire-branded wooden box. The Blood Oath series launched in 2015 with Pact No. 1, and will highlight a different variant, or Pact, each year.
“Pact No. 2 has a slightly fuller mouthfeel than Pact No. 1 with an oaky, caramel and cocoa aroma and a smooth flavor. The port-barrel finish really brings out the spice and fruit finish flavors,” says Rempe. “The freedom to choose the bourbons with the most complementary flavor profiles for Blood Oath allows us to create something truly special.”
Pact No. 2 is limited release, with only 7,500 3-packs created – this bourbon will never be made again.
For more information on Blood Oath, visit www.bloodoathbourbon.com